Loved Ones Of Harpenden Man Speak For First Time About Their Loss As Lawyers Launch High Court Legal Case
The family of a charity volunteer killed when he was knocked down in London by a Qatari sheikh speeding in a Rolls-Royce have spoken for the first time about their “devastating” loss.
Charles Roberts was killed when he was knocked down by a purple Rolls-Royce Wraith being driven by Sheikh Hassan Nasser Al-Thani near Hyde Park Corner, Mayfair.
The sheikh was driving at more than 52mph in a 30 zone, in the moments around the collision, The Old Bailey was previously told.
He was handed an eight-month prison sentence suspended for two years after pleading guilty to causing death by careless driving.
Charles' family asks lawyers to launch High Court legal case for damages
Following the incident, Charles’ family, of Harpenden, Hertfordshire, instructed expert road accident lawyers at Irwin Mitchell to help them secure compensation on behalf of Charles’ dependants.
The family are now warning of the dangers of speeding and the need for drivers to take care on the roads.
It comes after their legal team at Irwin Mitchell launched High Court proceedings against the sheikh's insurers.
Zoe Vallance is the specialist road accident lawyer at Irwin Mitchell representing Charles’ family, including cousin, Terry Conybeare, 79.
Expert Opinion“The last few years and coming to terms with Charles’ death and particularly how it was so avoidable, have been incredibly difficult for all of his family.
“Charles’ death has left a huge void in the lives of his loved ones and is a stark reminder of the consequences vulnerable road users such as pedestrians can face because of the careless actions of others.
“While nothing can make up for their loss, we’re determined to support Terry and the rest of Charles’ family. We urge the sheikh’s insurers to work with us to resolve this case as soon as possible and bring closure to the family.” Zoe Vallance
Charles Roberts fatally injured near Hyde Park Corner in collision involving Rolls-Royce
Charles, a retired railway signalling manager, was crossing Duke of Wellington place near Hyde Park when the Rolls-Royce collided with him in August 2019.
Charles, who was also a keen biker and volunteered for charities as a rider delivering blood to hospitals, was pronounced dead at the scene.
The Old Bailey was told that the sheikh had briefly been driving at 52mph to 54mph in a 30mph zone. The judge said he was 'satisfied' that had Al-Thani been driving “in or around” the speed limit Charles’ death would have been avoided.
As well as a suspended sentence, the sheikh received a three-year driving ban and a £25,000 fine.
At the time of his death Charles lived with his vulnerable brother Peter 68. He was reliant on Charles to help look after him and help plan his financial affairs.
Charles' family pay tribute to 'one of the good guys' as they issue road safety plea
Terry said: “Charles really was one of the good guys. He went out of his way to not only help his family, particularly Peter, but also others. Nothing was ever too much trouble for him.
“He had not long retired but was still healthy and active. Charles was really looking forward to spending his retirement travelling, volunteering with the blood bikes as well as on a heritage railway. However, all that was taken away from him.
“We’ve all taken Charles’ death really hard but Peter has been left devastated and really struggling to cope. Charles wasn’t only his older brother, but also his best friend and the one person in whom Peter could confide.
“While time has moved on we still feel the same sense of hurt and loss over what happened to Charles. It’s difficult not to think he should still be with us today.
“We’d do anything to have Charles back in our lives but we know that’s not possible. We just hope that by speaking out we can make motorists aware of the dangers of speeding and the need to always drive with care. We wouldn’t wish what we’re going through on anyone.”
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